J.A. King Scope of Accreditation by Location
ISO/IEC 17025:2005 & ANSI/NCSL Z540-1-1994
WHAT IS ISO 17025?
ISO/IEC 17025 is the main standard used by testing and calibration laboratories. Originally known as ISO/IEC Guide 25, ISO/IEC 17025 was initially issued by the International Organization for Standardization in 1999.
There are many commonalities with the ISO 9000 standard, but ISO/IEC 17025 adds in the concept of competence to the equation, and it applies directly to those organizations that produce testing and calibration results.
The ISO/IEC 17025 standard itself comprises five elements that are Scope, Normative References, Terms and Definitions, Management Requirements and Technical Requirements. Laboratories use ISO 17025 to implement a quality system aimed at improving their ability to consistently produce valid results. It is also the basis for accreditation from an Accreditation Body.
WHAT IS A2LA?
In order for accreditation bodies to recognize each others accreditation’s, the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) worked to establish methods of evaluating accreditation bodies against another ISO standard (ISO/IEC Guide 58 – which became ISO/IEC 17011).
Around the world, geo-political regions established regional cooperation to manage the work needed for such mutual recognition. These regional bodies include European Accreditation Cooperation (EA), the Asia Pacific Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (APLAC), Southern Africa Accreditation Cooperation (SADCA) and the Inter-American Accreditation Cooperation (IAAC).
In the US there are multiple Accreditation Bodies (ABs). The non-profit, non- government multidisciplinary ABs are the ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board/ACLASS and A2LA.